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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Wife and I took a little wheeling trip last night to escape all the noise at home. We have a far amount of people at home right now so we needed a little down time. We headed to one of my favorite forestry roads that winds its way to the top of a 4500 ft mountain then goes a few miles basically right on the top ridge. From up top you can see all the lights of Bristol TN/VA and a couple of other towns and cities. There is also a helicopter pad up on a high point with an amazing veiw of the sky. We stayed up there a bit seeing some shooting stars and some satellites.

I knew with the recent heavy rain and storms the road would be pretty rough in spots especially towards the end and up to the helipad. I did end up in 4WD lock in a few areas where we slipped a bit on the gravel. The full auto mode had no issue keeping us moving but 4WD lock auto ended the wheel spin that was at times spitting gavle everywhere and I don't have mud flaps (yet). We transversed deep ruts in a few spots but sadly all 4 wheels stayed on the ground.

Oh and on a dark night off-road the stock headlights alone just gives enough light to be see a bit ahead of you. I really missed my Chevy Trackers off-road light bars. The bumper bar really let's you clearly see the shape of the road and exactly how big some of the rocks jetting up out the road are. Basically the stock headlights don't give you a good contrast of the road and they get gobbled up in the darkness.

The snag came on the way back down the mountain. We came across a tree down crossing the road about 12" diameter and 30-35ft long. It had fallen down and embankment above the road so the heaviest end was 5-6 ft above the road and wedged in with some smaller trees. Now did I mention this is the only road up and down this mountain? Well it is and there was no way around this tree. I was worried we would have to call 911 to get someone out to clear the road. I know 911 seems like a bad idea for this situation but we found out by having to call a non-emergency number a while back that if anything has to be radio dispatched or involves other agencies the call has to go through the 911 dispatch. Since this is a forestry road I don't think the highway dept would be dispatched most likely a forestry ranger or maybe a game warden possibly the fire dept which is all volunteer out here all of which would have made feel bad. Oh and at this point it is midnight on a Sunday. So even if they did get someone the wait would have been crazy. Plus we would have had to drive back to the top of the mountain to even get cell signal.

Luckily within a week or so of getting our Compass I picked up a Harbor freight snatch strap and tossed it in with the spare tire. I was a bit worried though the way this tree was down the Compass might lack the power to move it or the strap not be up to such a task. But I layed the strap over the end of the tree then fed the strap through the end hoop so it choked down on the tree. Hooked the other end to one of the front recovery hook on the Trailhawk. Got in tossed the Jeep in reverse and gently started backing up. To a bit of my surprise the tree started moving and I was not having to rev it just back up giving it a little more gas than usual.

We got the tree longways down the left side of the road but I could not drag it all the way to the little ditch at the roads edge without putting the Jeep in the ditch. The tree had a big branch at the top end that was still crossing the road too far to drive around. So I tried to grab it and roll the whole tree over with it thinking this thing should roll easy. Well let me tell you it would not budge. Wife got out to help and both of us could not move this tree by either rolling or trying to drag the end of it. There was a pretty heavy branch broken off about 8ft long I grabbed it and used it for leverage under the tree while my wife pulled and we finally got the tree over almost into the ditch and the road was now open. It was still a great night and we really enjoyed being out where Jeeps are meant to be at home!

But let me suggest if you are using your Jeep off-road even in places your pretty sure you will not get stuck grap up a snatch strap and toss it in with your spare it just might come in handy in way you never thought of!

I have some cell pics they are not great but kind of shows what we were up against sadly I did not pic the tree across the road just after we dragged it with the Jeep!
 

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